Actor Vicky Kaushal on Wednesday said he always knew that a "simple story" like "Zara Hatke Zara Bachke" will connect with people, which is why the love that the movie is receiving theatrically is "beyond numbers" for the team.
Directed by Laxman Utekar, best known for "Luka Chuppi” and “Mimi", the Kaushal and Sara Ali Khan-starrer film released in theatres on June 2. It has earned Rs 30.60 crore in India.
Kaushal said the film, about an Indore-based couple struggling for privacy in a joint family set up, was narrated to him during the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic when theatrical releases were not doing well.
"The film was narrated to us right after the second wave of COVID when the situation was a lot more tense. It was like, 'What will happen to Bollywood? What kind of films are coming, not coming?' Then a simple story like this came to me. I just knew this will connect with people," Kaushal told reporters here at the success event of the movie.
The actor said despite their belief that the family film would connect with the audience, there were times when the team was unsure.
"In between a lot of mind play also happens that this film has released and worked, so only that kind of film will work and others won't. In between all of this, maybe we forgot that we began with the thought that this film will connect with people.
"In the last five days, we have realised that this is what we would feel in all our meetings that people will connect with it. Now, that people are loving it, for us, it's even beyond numbers...To see families coming and watching the film is the real joy. Now that the film has worked in cinema halls, we are here to thank all of you." Kaushal said Utekar was "most confident" about the film's theatrical potential.
"More than us winning, this is the victory of the audience. They have reiterated that only their power matters," he added. Expressing gratitude to audience and her producer Dinesh Vijan, Sara termed "Zara Hatke Zara Bachke" as her second debut as it's her first theatrical release after her 2020 film "Love Aaj Kal".
"A lot of times during the pandemic I would often wonder, 'Will films release in theaters like before?' 'Like, will the day come back again when I will see myself on the big screen?'. "I believe in signs and positivity. I was in 'Kedarnath' and (now) Dino sir, he is bringing this film on big screen. I am so grateful to him. Honestly, it is my debut again because it's been half a decade," she said, adding, "thank you to the audience for accepting the film".
Sara, 27, also thanked her director for giving her the opportunity to play the role of Somya and co-star Vicky Kaushal for being the "most superb partner".
"It was outstanding to work with you. I don't want to talk about how talented you are because everyone knows that. You are so humble, gracious," she said.
Utekar said Vijan could have easily released the film on a streamer but he took the risk to release it theatrically.
"I want to thank Dino, I am so grateful to him. He had every logical reason to bring this on an OTT platform and he would have been completely correct in everyone's eyes. But he took that risk of getting a film like this to cinema halls in today's times...to take that call is a huge thing," the director said.
He further said the success of "Zara Hatke Zara Bachke" has broken the myth that only big scale spectacle films will click at the box office. Utekar dismissed the notion that 'buy one get one ticket free' offer is the reason behind the success of "Zara Hatke Zara Bachke". He said a good film will always find its audience.
"They are saying, 'The film is working because of the buy one get one free offer on ticket.'.. If a product is good, even if it's not free, people will buy. We did make a good film. Thank you so much Dino for taking the film to its audience," he said.
Co-produced by Maddock Films and Jio Studios, “Zara Hatke Zara Bachke” also stars Inaamulhaq, Sushmita Mukherjee, Neeraj Sood, Rakesh Bedi and Sharib Hashmi.
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